What Yoga Isn't
Yoga is a personal practice. To some it's possibly more about physical fitness and to many it's a spiritual practice.
Yoga isn't posing. Period.
Yoga is a deep and wide subject with many disciplines that has endured many thousands of years. That in itself says that there's something worth looking at. Some styles of yoga have more meditation or mantra than body practices.
Yoga was at one time a way to engage street children in India so they would stay out of trouble. This is also where yoga olympics came from.
Yes, yoga olympics.
Most of us starting a yoga practice will never be at olympian level.
Hope that takes the pressure off.
What You won't see in my class
I totally understand why many people are afraid of yoga. The preconceived notion of what type of a body you require to be able to do yoga can be off putting and keeps many out of yoga classes when it could be the one thing that empowers them.
You do not need to be flexible to do yoga! Can you believe me?
With the right teacher, you become flexible by having a regular practice.
I have heard this comment the most from people who don't think yoga is for them.
The teacher can make or break your experience with yoga.
Talk to them. Tell them your concerns. A good yoga teacher has the ability to read the room and guide the class verbally. This is really key because everyone in any yoga class is not at the same level of fitness nor do they have the same body shape. Big differentiations.
I am a Yoga Teacher...
not an acrobatics teacher. All the postures you see are absolutely achievable, but are they necessary? My purpose in teaching yoga is to make sure every student is listening to their body. I've heard that statement in countless yoga classes and what I discovered is that most people don't know really know what it means. I started my own yoga practice when I was teacher of body mind communication and an expert of emotional release. This sets me apart from other teachers as I read body language messaging and understand how emotional energy moves through the body. My approach is very practical. I have used yoga as a method for people to connect body, mind and soul.
Sorry, No headstands in my class
I can do a headstand, again I ask is it necessary? I don't believe most North Americans walking into a yoga class require headstand.
If anything, they likely need to stretch out and realign their cervical spine after sitting at a desk or on their phone for a big part of the day. When I finally found a studio where the teachers had a solid method of instruction that made it possible for me to move into the postures, I was so relieved. If they had expected me to go into a headstand, I wouldn't have been able to do it and I wouldn't have gone back.
I have been in classes where they guide the class to headstand, whether or not their body is at a stage in their practice isn't discussed.
The competitive nature that comes out when you're on a the mat next to an avid yogi works to motivate and can also work against you.
Again, those yoga olympics and some of the extreme yoga practices from another time are influencers here.
I'm not saying they're wrong, you just won't get a headstand in my class.